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Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings
Old 04-09-2006, 12:34 AM   #1
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Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings

I'm reading Elaine Pagels' The Gnostics Gospels and Beyond Belief

Its a real relevation (so to speak) I find the idea that there were competing versions of Christianity in the early days - that were supressed by the Orthodox Church - enthralling and there were different versions of what Christ, the Marys and the apostles were about and now this week there is the gnostic writings on Judas that put him in a positive light.....
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings
Old 04-09-2006, 01:13 AM   #2
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings

There was a pretty good documentary on the Learning Channel a couple weeks ago that was about how the chapters of the bible were selected. At various times over the millenia, commiittees have been formed to decide what goes in/what stays out of the holy text.

Another issue is translation. When you translate any text, you are essentially rewriting it. The Bible in English is a whole 'nother book from the Bible in Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic, and the other ancient languages. Translators had to puzzle out the meanings and ambiguities of the original texts, and sometimes they got it wrong.

I remember as a pious child I was SHOCKED when a Catholic friend of mine showed me a Bible with the Apocrypha in it. These were disputed texts, some of which told the story of Jesus as a little boy. In one story he creates a bird out of dirt and brings it to life. In another he gets pissed off at a playmate and kills him with a touch. It was very disturbing to me.
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings
Old 04-09-2006, 01:22 AM   #3
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings

yeah, and the book of enoch has some wild stuff in it. think the coptic christians in ethiopia still use this book
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings
Old 04-09-2006, 01:30 AM   #4
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanTien
I'm reading Elaine Pagels' The Gnostics Gospels and Beyond Belief

Its a real relevation (so to speak) I find the idea that there were competing versions of Christianity in the early days - that were supressed by the Orthodox Church - enthralling and there were different versions of what Christ, the Marys and the apostles were about and now this week there is the gnostic writings on Judas that put him in a positive light.....
If you read the Old Testament vs the New Testament you find enough contradictions to be enthralling. *Read the Apocrypha and study some archaeology and you really begin to realize how much Christianity evolved and changed in the first several hundred years after Christ. *The Dark Ages brought about even more evolution.

Read about Mormonism and other modern religions to really enthrall you.

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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings
Old 04-09-2006, 08:07 AM   #5
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings

Beowulf and Gudrun is showing at certain Theatres, I was really into Old English Religions as a kid.

I find the History of The Knights Templar fascinating so I am buying Holy Blood, Holy Grail

Stonehenge is a revelation and when we visit some of the ruined Abbeys in the most isolated areas, one wonders about the people who felt so strongly they could endure that life style??

The Yorkshire Moors with the mist hanging over them, early in the morning, surreal.
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings
Old 04-09-2006, 12:21 PM   #6
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tawny Dangle
Translators had to puzzle out the meanings and ambiguities of the original texts, and sometimes they got it wrong.
Gosh, it's hard to believe that the church (whatever church) would succumb to the temptation to politicize their creeds.

Although it's certainly ironic. Or is that satirical?
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings
Old 04-09-2006, 03:57 PM   #7
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Re: Anyone Else Reading Heretical Religious Writings

I got interested in the history of the bible a few months back. I read this book (among others):

The Bible: A Very Short Introduction, by John Riches. Oxford University Press. ISBN: 0192853430

Got 4.5 stars on Amazon reviews.

Pretty good overview of how the bible evolved from oral tradition to written texts and then certain texts were chosen to be included in the canonical teaching of the Church. Fairly interesting reading. Takes a critical, non-religious viewpoint (religious doctrine doesn't get in the way of explaining history).







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